Comments made by District 3 Republican County Board candidate Mike Walkup to the McHenry County Board Tuesday night:
“According to the Mayan Long Count Calendar, the World will end in December of 2012.
“The world may or may end then, but our local democracy may.
“Jack Franks has already started his campaign of disinformation telling people that this referendum
is about ‘electing the County Board Chair.’ He is prepared to spend half of his $500,000 otherwise
unusable campaign war chest to get that message out.
“Who is going to stop him?
“I have a suggestion.
“How about if you help your own cause and show the voters that you are really
serious about reform between now and November?
“That might help.
“It can’t hurt.
“Show them that the McHenry County Board has gotten the message and is ready for reform.
“Here are some of my suggestions:
Vote to apply term limits to the County Board Chair. Do this before the election. Make it retroactive to apply to the current Chair, if that is allowed. Even if there may not be technical legal authority, who is going to challenge it? It would be political suicide.
- Mr. Keohler: Announce that you will not run again for Chair. Not this year, nor any other.
- Remove the power of the Chair to appoint committee members and Chairs. Set up a lottery system with seniority factored in. Or have the most senior member of the committee automatically be the chair. Or use the Committee on Committees. Get the County Board Chair out of the process.
- Drastically reduce the salary of the County Board Chair. There is no reason to pay $85K per year and give him or her an office. This just leads to duplication of the work of the County Administrator. The Chair should do liaison with other governmental bodies and officials and chair the meetings. That’s it. The Administrator should run the day to day functions of the county.
- Comply fully with all Freedom of Information Act requests and don’t skirt the Open Meetings Act. Don’t participate in lobbying efforts to weaken either.
- Don’t raise taxes. Not even by the Cost of Living Amount, as you are allowed to do, until the recession is over.
- Don’t give yourselves any more salary increases, and increase your contributions to your generous benefit plans to match what is typically available for people in private, not public, employment. They are the ones paying for it.
“If you do this, it may help give you a fighting chance on avoiding the Armageddon of the County Executive form of government.
“If not, maybe the Mayans were a bit right after all.”